Week of October 18, 1998



Mick Cook - vocals, drums
Clive John - keyboards
Mick Stubbs - keyboards, vocals, guitar
Johnny Weider - violin
Cliff Williams - vocals, bass
Laurie Wisefield - guitar, vocals
Jimmy Anderson - keyboards


HOME (CBS 64752) 1972
ALCHEMIST (CBS 65550) 1973


Fancy Lady, Hollywood Child/Shady Lady (CBS 7809) 1972
Green Eyed Fairy/Sister Rosalie (CBS 2362) 1974

Someone at CBS must have had very trustable ears. The development of Home within years from a competent but immature outfit to the makers of a minor masterpiece is nothing less than stunning. They started out as a surprisingly American-sounding progressive act. On the first album there are luckily no traces of self-indulgence or technical showmanship. There rather is an attempt to convey genuine emotion through well-constructed melody and tasteful arrangements. Yet, the results are more impressive for their potentiality than for their immediate impact. Anyway, there is skill, courage and some excellent melodies as well. Already very noticeable is the fluent and "natural" sounding guitar of Wisefield. The second album shows some progress. The aforementioned guitar reigns supreme on almost all tracks, the singing has improved and the sound is less derivative and swings effortlessly between different moods. The only flaw: the attempts to sound more controlled influence their emotional expressions unfavourably, resulting in a few compositions which are not on the usual level. Typically a transitory album. They came to full bloom on "The Alchemist".  Suddenly, all that previously only was suspected, springs into life.  There are some incredible guitar parts, many highly emotional songs, dexterous but totally controlled playing and even inspired lyrics. While at times the music is strongly reminiscent of New Zealand band Dragon, thoughtful and gently powerful, on side two there is a unique and highly recommended apotheosis of most elements that make UK progressive rock worthwhile. The arrangements gain a hitherto only hinted at complexity, which is well-hidden, though, and only reveals itself after several spins. Don't let the fact that this is a concept album deter you from estimating its musical value.

Laurie Wisefield was later in Wishbone Ash. Test pressings exist for a 4th CBS album that was never released.
John Wieder had also worked with Family, and John Clive - with Man.

Source: The Tapestry of Delights - The Comprehensive Guide to British Music of the Beat, R&B, Psychedelic and Progressive Eras 1963-1976, Vernon Joynson ISBN 1 899855 04 1

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